The Potluck

Nearly 80,000 people signed up for Minnesota’s $100 COVID-19 vaccine incentive

By: - August 23, 2021 2:42 pm

Jennifer Simmons receives the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine during Senior Weekend at Richmond Raceway in Richmond, Va., February 2, 2021. Parker Michels-Boyce/ For the Virginia Mercury.

More than 79,000 Minnesotans signed up for a $100 reward through Minnesota’s monthlong COVID-19 vaccine incentive program, Gov. Tim Walz’s office announced Monday.

The state paid for the program, which ended Monday, with federal COVID-19 relief funds. It seems to have been most popular among Minnesotans in age groups and geographic areas with lower-than-average vaccination rates, according to the governor’s office.

Brown, Carlton, Sherburne, Mille Lacs and Chisago counties saw the most signups per capita. Vaccination rates in those five counties, except Carlton, trail the statewide vaccination rate by as many as 21 percentage points.

Almost 80% of the incentive signups were from Minnesotans under 50, who have lower vaccination rates than older people.

The 79,810 incentive submissions from people who got first doses since July 30 represent about 2.4% of the total number of Minnesotans with at least one dose of vaccine. Minnesota is averaging about 4,955 doses administered daily, up from 2,675 last month, according to the governor’s office.

“Everybody in our state benefited from this incentive program, regardless of when they got their shot. The best way to manage COVID-19 is by vaccinating more of our friends and neighbors,” Walz said in a news release. 

As of Aug. 19, nearly 70% of Minnesotans over 12 — more than 3.2 million people — have received at least one dose of vaccine. About 65% are fully vaccinated.

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Rilyn Eischens
Rilyn Eischens

Rilyn Eischens is a data reporter with the Reformer. Rilyn is a Minnesota native and has worked in newsrooms in the Twin Cities, Iowa, Texas and most recently Virginia, where she covered education for The Staunton News Leader. She's an alumna of the Dow Jones News Fund data journalism program and the Minnesota Daily. When Rilyn isn't in the newsroom, she likes to read, add to her plant collection and try new recipes.